Journal Article Page
European UrologyVolume 51, issue 3, pages 585-872, March 2007
[Editorial Comment by P. Karakiewicz]
Anatomical Landmarks of Radical Prostatecomy
Accepted 3 November 2006, Published online 14 November 2006, pages 629 - 639
In the present study, we review current literature and based on our experience, we present the anatomical landmarks of open and laparoscopic/endoscopic radical prostatectomy.
A thorough literature search was performed with the Medline database on the anatomy and the nomenclature of the structures surrounding the prostate gland. The correct handling of puboprostatic ligaments, external urethral sphincter, prostatic fascias and neurovascular bundle is necessary for avoiding malfunction of the urogenital system after radical prostatectomy.
When evaluating new prostatectomy techniques, we should always take into account both clinical and final oncological outcomes. The present review adds further knowledge to the existing “postprostatectomy anatomical hazard” debate. It emphasizes upon the role of the puboprostatic ligaments and the course of the external urethral sphincter for urinary continence. When performing an intrafascial nerve sparing prostatectomy most urologists tend to approach as close to the prostatic capsula as possible, even though there is no concurrence regarding the nomenclature of the surrounding fascias and the course of the actual neurovascular bundles. After completion of an intrafascial technique the specimen does not contain any periprostatic tissue and thus the detection of pT3a disease is not feasible. This especially becomes problematic if the tumour reaches the resection margin.
Nerve sparing open and laparoscopic radical prostatectomy should aim in maintaining sexual function, recuperating early continence after surgery, without hindering the final oncological outcome to the procedure. Despite the different approaches for radical prostatectomy the key for better results is the understanding of the anatomy of the bladder neck and the urethra.
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